In last week's Coastal Observer Councilman Steve Goggans completely misrepresented Keep It Green's intent and purpose. We hope this information will set the record straight. It was written by Keep It Green steering committee member Cindy Person a retired attorney who formally practiced in Pennsylvania and Maryland. She has visited and lived on the Neck for decades.
Keep It Green (Keep It Green) represents the voices of thousands of citizens of the Lower Waccamaw Neck. In response to last week’s Letter to the Editor from Councilman Steve Goggans that referenced one sentence of Keep It Green’s vision and mission statement, Keep It Green would like to set the record straight and clear up any misunderstanding about who we are and who we are not.
The complete Keep It Green vision and mission statement is as follows:
Keep It Green is committed to protecting and preserving the land, quality of life, recreational, open space, and natural character of our community in the Lower Waccamaw Neck for the benefit of present and future generations.
Keep It Green is opposed to all zoning changes that increase population density in the lower neck.
Keep It Green will hold public officials accountable to follow proper law and procedure.
Keep It Green is not opposed to appropriate development that is within the current zoning standards.
Keep It Green was formed in response to our county officials repeatedly approving developers’ zoning change requests without following proper law or procedure and without regard to violations of our land use plan. The Georgetown County Land Use Plan specifically states that there should be no further increases in population density in the lower neck so as not to exacerbate existing problems with flooding, stormwater runoff, traffic, and overburdened infrastructure.
To be clear, Keep It Green is not opposed to all zoning changes – only those that increase population density in violation of our comprehensive land use plan. Likewise, Keep It Green is not opposed to appropriate development that is within the current zoning standards. Keep It Green believes that every landowner has the right to use his land in accordance with the way it was zoned when he purchased it and that every landowner has the right to expect that neighboring property will not be re-zoned to his detriment.
Keep It Green asks only that our county officials follow the law and the desires of the taxpaying public in its decision-making processes. This should not be a radical concept; however, in a county where conflicts of interest and the furtherance of personal agendas abound, perhaps it may seem radical to some.
The Keep It Green vision and mission is not confusing. If the county starts following the law and acting in accordance with the wishes of its citizens – there will be no need for Keep It Green. But as long as it doesn’t, Keep It Green will continue to be the voice of the people and a platform from which to hold our public officials accountable.
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